Mississippi tea party candidate Chris McDaniel is offering a $1,000 reward for proof of voter fraud in his primary runoff loss to incumbent Sen. Thad Cochran, Politico reported
It's the latest salvo from McDaniel, who refuses to concede the race to Cochran, who won the runoff by nearly 7,000 votes on June 24. McDaniel, a state senator, defeated Cochran in the June 3 primary, but failed to secure more than 50 percent of the vote, causing the runoff election.
Cochran's runoff win was helped by
Democrats and African Americans who did not vote in the June 3 primary. Voters in the Magnolia State do not have to declare party affiliation when they register.
The $1,000 reward would be paid to anyone who can bring evidence leading to the arrest and conviction of anybody who participated in voter fraud, Politico said. McDaniel's camp claims many of the Democrats who voted on June 24 cast their ballots illegally, because they'd already voted in the primary election for their own party.
In addition, McDaniel's backers have alleged that Cochran's campaign paid some voters $15 each to support his re-election.
The accusations were levied after conservative blogger Charles Johnson
claimed in a column that a "black reverend" bought votes in the Mississippi senatorial runoff to help defeat McDaniel.
Johnson alleged that the Rev. Stevie Fielder told him he had "delivered 'hundreds or even thousands' of blacks to the polls after being offered money and being assured by a Cochran campaign operative that Chris McDaniel was a racist.
This past week, McDaniel's team has sought donations
for "the McDaniel legal fund." Email and online solicitations have asked for $15 contributions, saying that Cochran's campaign "allegedly paid $15 per vote to steal the June 24 Republican primary election. To fight the alleged corruption, we need your help. Just $15 will help us begin to eradicate corruption in Mississippi."
Cochran aide Jordan Russell Thursday said the reward money is another sign of McDaniel's "desperation" over the runoff loss and that the state senator is "refusing th accept the will of the voters in Mississippi," according to Politico.
McDaniel spokesman Noel Fritsch told Politico Thursday that the campaign has been examined poll books in 51 of 82 counties' poll books and found what appear to be 4,900 irregularities already.
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